Best mobile stocking fillers
21st Dec 2013 | 14:06
How do you win Secret Santa?
With Christmas here and a shiny new mobile under the tree, we're here to help avoid the yearly stress associated with buying Christmas gifts. We've prepared a handy guide to the best stocking fillers to accompany your lovely new smartphone.
Wether you've broken the bank, or spent wisely on the mobile in question, there's something for everyone in our best stocking fillers guide.
So what are you waiting for? Pull on an awfully festive jumper, pop on a woolly hat and maybe even a scarf, then sit back and smugly swig a mulled beverage safe in knowledge you've got Christmas sorted.
For those that love to listen to music, but also enjoy the comfort of a warm head, headphone hats are a great compromise. We could have suggested a variety of earmuffs with built in headphones (also a good idea), but we've plumped for a hat as they provide all round cranial protection.
It doesn't matter what phone you've purchased, headphone hats will generally suit any phone with a 3.5mm headphone port. They are ideal for any media lover, so couple the Galaxy Note 3 with its big screen, or the iPhone 5S and HTC One with their heavy music slants, with a headphone hat and you're on to a winner.
- Price from £12.50 - £25
Lego iPhone Case
We're trying to avoid the dreaded phone case, but sometimes one catches our eye and we can't help go 'oooooh!'. The Brickcase (for iPhone 4/4S and iPhones 5/5S) comes in a variety of colours and it's compatible with "all major brick brands", or you could opt for the official Lego case from Belkin (for iPhone 5/5S or iPad Mini).
As well as protecting your new Apple device, playing with your phone has never been so literal. The brick cases make us feel like we were fiver years old again. Let's face it, there has always been a budding architect or spaceship designer in all of us, so we're letting our creativity out and asking for one this Christmas.
- Price from £14.99
The standard cameras that come equipped on the modern smartphone are able to cope with a wide variety of situations, but they will never be able to provide the same range of options that can be found on mid-range compact cameras, let alone DSLRs.
Although they will never be able to solve that problem, clip on lenses go some way to adding another level of professionalism and creativity. Just think how cool your Instagram photos will look!
Get the right set and these will be the perfect add on to complement the UltraPixel technology found in the HTC One, One Mini or One Max, as well as the 13MP camera sat behind the LG G2. Lenses would even help the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C in their domination of Flickr.
- Price £9.90
Touch screen gloves
One of the biggest bugbears of the ice cold weather is the decision between putting on a pair of gloves or being able to use your touchscreen phone. This wasn't the case a few years ago when the likes of the HTC Tattoo came with resistive displays, but that tech has been and gone.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 and Nokia Lumia 1020 both come packed with super fancy screen tech, making touch screen gloves completely irrelevant. However there are still many capacitive screens that need the extra help; the HTC One and the iPhone 5S are prime examples. The solution? Touch screen gloves, like the pair we found on I want one of those.
- Price £6.99
Not to be associated with the legions of Apple fanatics, the iPhone fan is an attachment that turns your iPhone into pocket fan for the summer. It could be used in the winter too, but we're already finding the winter breeze sufficient for our cooling needs.
Ideal for the frequent traveller, or for those living in the sunny climes of anywhere but the UK, the iPhone fan is easy to store and doesn't require extra batteries. It is compatible with the old 30-pin connectors (3G through to 4S), running off your iPhone's battery instead.
Unfortunately we can't find an iPhone fan that runs off the lightning dock, but those with the iPhone 4S or earlier will find this the ultimate summer accessory.
- Price £7.99
A phone or tablet stylus in the tech world is something that is as mundane as the pencil, yet somehow a stylus shaped like a pencil is a lot more interesting. Who'd have thought? How about one that is shaped like a paint brush? Or one shaped like a crayon? Colour us excited.
It is even possible to get a stylus that is shaped like a key, that doubles up as a phone or tablet stand. If you're after something a little more serious, why not check out our guide to some of the best stylus' around.
Be careful though, as some stylus' won't work with every device. If you're unsure, contact the manufacturer or retailer.
- Price from £3.99 - £7.99
Manufacturers don't throw a lot of money towards the design of USB chargers, then again their sole purpose is to provide power to your gadgetry when its running a little lower than you'd like. Power taps (such as on Firebox or Amazon) change this.
Whilst power taps don't add a lot of functionality over a standard charger (they can be turned on and off), they come with an inbuilt indicator to let you know when your device is charged and "won't flood your house with electricity if you leave it on". Neat.
The great thing about the Power Tap is that it is compatible with any USB cable, although we can't vouch for how well it works with the likes of the iPad Air. Just pop in the cable that came inside the box of your Moto G, Galaxy S4 Mini or Nokia Lumia 925 and away you go.
- Price from £16.20 - £19.99
Smartphones can get very grubby and covered with a million fingerprints, especially if you tend to loan them out. Everybody needs a screen cleaner then, but who really wants just another boring micro fibre cloth?
Why not opt for something more fun like a puppy or a panda? You could even go the whole 'hog' and choose a screen cleaner in the shape of a pig. There are a variety of screen cleaners out there, so why would you go for something boring anymore?
For those that hadn't guessed, screen cleaners work with every mobile screen going. To be honest, you could use them on any surface, even the bathroom mirror, but we wouldn't recommend that. Fashion conscious individuals might find the pig screen cleaner suits their pink iPhone 5C, pink Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini or pink Galaxy Note 3 perfectly.
- Price from £6.49 - £6.99
Fishing is a sport that appeals to many, yet the desire to sit outside by the side of the water on a wet and windy day soon turns something fun into something a little more laborious. Sitting inside in front of an open fire whilst fishing sounds more fun, doesn't it?
It might not appeal to the hardcore fishing fans, but AppToyz App fisher turns your iPhone or Android into a fishing rod, saving on all the expensive fishing kit and the lost toes due to frost bite.
- Price £16.49
Think of the 1980's and chances are that you'll think of leg warmers, popped collars and mullets. It was a time when things were big, not just the hair, but the mobile phone too. For those with a little more cash to splash, you can recapture the magic of the 80's with the Binatone Brick from Carphone Warehouse.
We really like The Brick, not only for nostalgic reasons but because it works as both an accessory for a smartphone (connecting via Bluetooth) or as an entirely separate handset (complete with SIM port).
Surely it won't be long until we're all in brightly coloured clothes and listening to Frankie Goes to Hollywood again.
As we said, The Brick is compatible with all handsets that support Bluetooth, as well as being an ideal PAYG handset too. LG G2? Samsung Galaxy S3? Huawei Ascend G510? Yes, yes and yes. The majority of smartphones come with Bluetooth on board, so The Brick will work with anything
- Price £29.95